High-intensity intermittent exercise and cardiovascular and autonomic function

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Journal Article
Clinical Autonomic Research, 2013, 23 (1), pp. 57 - 65
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Objective: The effect of 12 weeks of high-intensity intermittent exercise (HIIE) on cardiac, vascular, and autonomic function of young males was examined. Methods: Thirty-eight young men with a BMI of 28.7 ± 3.1 kg m -2 and age 24.9 ± 4.3 years were randomly assigned to either an HIIE or control group. The exercise group underwent HIIE three times per week, 20 min per session, for 12 weeks. Aerobic power and a range of cardiac, vascular, and autonomic measures were recorded before and after the exercise intervention. Results: The exercise, compared to the control group, recorded a significant reduction in heart rate accompanied by an increase in stroke volume. For the exercise group forearm vasodilatory capacity was significantly enhanced, P < 0.05. Arterial stiffness, determined by pulse wave velocity and augmentation index, was also significantly improved, after the 12-week intervention. For the exercise group, heart period variability (low- and high-frequency power) and baroreceptor sensitivity were significantly increased. Conclusion: High-intensity intermittent exercise induced significant cardiac, vascular, and autonomic improvements after 12 weeks of training. © 2012 Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg.
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